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Glossary of archery terms

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is a list of archery terms, including both the equipment and the practice. A brief description for each word or phrase is also included.


  • Aluminium (material) – Used in modern archery for the production of arrows
  • Anchor point – A point to be touched by the draw hand or string when the bow is fully drawn and ready to shoot, usually a point on the archer's mouth, chin or nose
  • AMO (organization) – The Archery Manufacturers and Merchants Organization (now known as the ATA)
  • AMO length (measure) – A standardized length for measuring bow strings
  • Arbalest – A late variation of the crossbow that came into use in Europe during the 12th century
  • Archer (practitioner) – One who practices archery (a.k.a. bowman)
  • Archer's paradox (effect) – The effect produced by an arrow flexing as it leaves the bow
  • Archery (practice) – The practice of using a bow to shoot arrows
  • Arm guard (equipment) – A protective strap or sheath for an archer's forearm (a.k.a. bracer)
  • Arrow (equipment) – A shafted projectile that is shot with a bow
  • Arrowhead (equipment) – The front end of an arrow; also known as the head, point or tip
  • Arrow rest (equipment) – A device used to hold the arrow against the handle until it is released
  • ATA (organization) – The Archery Trade Association (formerly known as the AMO)
  • A.T.A. (measure) – Acronym for axle-to-axle, the length between the two pivotal axles which hold the cams onto the limbs on a compound bow
  • ASA – Archery Shooters Association


  • Bodkin point (equipment) – A sharp, pointed arrow head
  • Bolt (equipment) – A crossbow projectile; also called a quarrel
  • Boss (equipment) – A target, typically made from tightly compacted foam or straw
  • Bowman (practitioner) – One who practices archery (a.k.a. archer)
  • Bow (equipment) – An ancient weapon powered by elasticity, used for hunting and sport
  • Bowfishing (practice) – The use of archery equipment for catching fish
  • Bowhunting (practice) – The practice of hunting game using archery
  • Bow string (equipment) – A fiber joining two ends of a bow for launching arrows
  • Bowyer (craftsman) – One who makes bows
  • Bracing (practice) – The act of attaching a bow string to a bow
  • Brace height (measure) – The distance from the string to the pivot point of the bow's grip
  • Bracer (equipment) – A protective strap or sheath for an archer's forearm (a.k.a. arm guard)
  • Broadhead (equipment) – A sharp-bladed hunting head
  • Bullseye (equipment) – The central area of a target, often for which a greater number of points may be scored when hit
  • Butts (location) – A practice field with mounds of earth used as targets
  • Button (equipment) – An adjustable spring-loaded contact for the arrow as it sits on the rest, mounted perpendicular to the arrow


  • Carbon fiber (material) – Used in modern archery for the production of arrows
  • Clicker (equipment) – A device used to indicate an archer's optimum draw length
  • Clout archery (practice) – A form of archery in which archers shoot arrows toward a flag (known as the clout) from a relatively long distance and are scored based on how close each arrow lands to the flag
  • Cock feather (equipment) – A differently-colored fletch that indicates proper arrow alignment on the string (a.k.a. index feather)
  • Composite bow (equipment) – A bow made from various laminated materials
  • Compound bow (equipment) – A modern bow that uses a system of cables and pulleys
  • Crest (equipment) – Heraldic markings on an arrow used for identification or design
  • Crossbow (equipment) – A bow mounted on a stock, which shoots projectiles called bolts or quarrels
  • Crown (equipment) – The nock end of an arrow where cresting and paints are applied


  • Daikyu (equipment) – A Japanese longbow
  • Decurve bow (equipment) – A form of bow in which the unstrung tips curve toward the archer
  • Deflex bow (equipment) – A form of bow in which the entire length of the handle and limbs curve toward the archer
  • Drawing (practice) – The act of pulling the string that is attached to the bow.
  • Draw length (measure) – Archer: individual measure. At full draw the distance in inches from nock point on bow string to deepest grip spot (pivot-point) plus 1 34 inches (44 mm) (AMO standard). Bow: characteristic measure of the bow together with its draw weight. The technically given optimal draw length for full draw of that bow (AMO standard). Draw weight of a bow means weight at its draw length.
  • Draw weight (measure) – The number of pounds of force required to draw a bow to its draw length
  • Dry loosing (practice) – refers to the loosing of the string of a bow without an arrow on the nock, potentially damaging the bow


  • End (practice) – A round of arrows shot during an archery event (rarely more than six)[1]
  • English longbow (equipment) – A powerful medieval bow; also known as the Welsh longbow


  • Feet per second (abbrev. FPS, measure) – Unit of measurement for arrow velocity
  • Fiberglass (material) – Used in modern archery equipment for the production of both bows and arrows
  • Field archery (practice) – Shooting at targets of unmarked distances in an open field
  • Field tip (equipment) – A practice head for targets
  • Finger tab (equipment) – A small leather patch to protect the archer's fingers
  • Fistmele (measure) – The proper distance between the handle of a bow and the bow string when the bow is strung (a.k.a. brace height)
  • Flatbow (equipment) – A non-recurved bow with a rectangular cross section
  • Fletching (equipment) – The stabilizing fins or vanes of an arrow
  • Fletcher (craftsman) – One who makes arrows
  • Flex (measure) – The amount of bend an arrow shaft provides; contrasted with spine
  • Flu-flu arrow (equipment) – A specially designed short-range arrow
  • Footed arrow (equipment) – An arrow with a shaft composed of two types of wood


  • Game (target) – Non-domesticated animals hunted for food or sport
  • Glove (equipment) – Protective gear for an archer's fingers (a.k.a. shooting glove)
  • Gungdo (practice) – The Korean practice of archery


Fletching showing index feather (a.k.a. cock feather – green) and hen feathers (pink)
Fletching showing index feather (a.k.a. cock feather – green) and hen feathers (pink)
  • Hankyu (equipment) – A short Japanese bow
  • Hybrid (equipment) – A term to describe the combination of a recurve and a longbow, also known as "reflex/deflex"
  • Head (equipment) – The front end of an arrow; also known as the arrowhead, point or tip
  • Hen feather (equipment) – Name given to the shaft feathers based on misunderstanding of cock (leading) feather
  • Horse archer (practitioner) – An archer mounted on a horse
  • Horse archery (practice) – Archery mounting on a horse


  • Index fletching (equipment) – A differently-coloured fletch that indicates proper arrow alignment (a.k.a. cock fletching)


  • Judo point (equipment) – A target and small-game head equipped with spring wires for easy location


  • Kisser (equipment) – A button used to indicate consistent vertical distance when drawing a bow
  • Kyudo (practice) – The Japanese practice of archery


  • Longbow (equipment) – A tall wooden bow with a D shaped cross-section, approximately the same height as the archer, without significant recurve
  • Loose (practice) – The act of shooting an arrow from a bow (a.k.a. release)
  • Laminated bow (equipment) – A bow with different materials laminated together to make a single bow
  • Limb (equipment) – The upper and lower arms of a bow
  • Longrod (equipment) – Rod attached to the bow to dampen vibrations



  • Nock (equipment) – The notch at the rear end of an arrow; also the notches at the ends of the bow limbs to which the bowstring is attached, or looped over
  • Nock (practice) – The act of setting an arrow in a bow
  • Nocking point (equipment) – The point on a bow string over which an arrow nock is placed


  • Overdraw (practice) – The use of a device, e.g. a siper, to allow the shooting of arrows shorter than the draw of the bow
  • Overdrawn (measure) – A condition in which a bow string is too short for the bow; fistmele is exceeded


  • Plunger or pressure button (equipment) – A device used to correct an arrow's flex at the point of release
  • Point (equipment) – The front end of an arrow; also known as the arrowhead, head or tip
  • Poisons (equipment) – Toxic additions to arrow heads in order to increase hunting effectiveness


  • Quarrel (equipment) – A crossbow projectile; also called a bolt
  • Quiver (equipment) – A container for an archer's projectiles (arrows)


  • Recurve bow (equipment) – A form of bow in which the unstrung tips curve away from the archer
  • Reflex bow (equipment) – A form of bow in which the entire length of the handle and arms curve away from the archer
  • Release (practice) – The act of relaxing the finger(s) of the drawing hand (see Bow draw) to free an arrow from a bow (a.k.a. loose)
  • Release a small handheld object that can be clipped to a bowstring and releases when a trigger is pressed.
  • Rest (equipment) – A device used to hold the arrow against the handle until it is released
  • Riser (equipment) – The handle section of a bow
  • Reloading (term) – A term used for loading an arrow
  • Run archery (practice) – Shooting discipline connecting archery with running


  • Safety arrow (equipment) – Arrow with wide tip or padded head, often used for reenactments
  • Self bow (equipment) – A bow made from a single piece of material (normally wood)
  • Serving (equipment) – Extra thread wound around a bow string in order to support or protect the main fiber
  • Shaft (equipment) – The main structural element of an arrow
  • Shaftment (equipment) – Part of the arrow upon which the fletchings lie
  • Shaft feathers (equipment) – The two feathers which oppose the cock feather
  • Shooting glove (equipment) – Protective gear for an archer's fingers
  • Siper (equipment) – an overdraw device used in Turkish archery
  • Spine (measure) – The stiffness of an arrow shaft; contrasted with flex
  • Stabiliser (equipment) – A weighted rod or set of rods used to provide balance to a bow
  • Stave (equipment) – A strip of wood from which a bow may be made


  • Tab (equipment) – A small leather patch to protect the archer's fingers
  • Target (equipment) – General term for the intended destination of a shot arrow
  • Target archery (practice) – Shooting at non-moving targets placed varying distances away
  • Target panic (condition) – Set of symptoms developed for psychological reasons resulting in lowered accuracy
  • Target point (equipment) – Bullet-shaped practice head, used for targets
  • Target shooting (practice) – Competitive event that uses projectile weapons for tests of proficiency
  • Thumb ring (equipment) – Protective ring for an archer's thumb
  • Tip (equipment) – Either (especially the top) end of the bow, as differentiated from the point of an arrow
  • Tong-ah (equipment) – an overdraw device used in traditional Korean archery, similar to the Turkish Majra


  • Upshot – The last shot in an archery contest


  • Vane (equipment) – The stabilizing fin of an arrow


  • Wand shoot (practice) – An archery event in which arrows are shot at a slat of soft wood that is typically 6' tall and 2" wide[2]
  • Welsh longbow (equipment) – A powerful medieval bow; also known as an English longbow
  • Wood (material) – The earliest material used for the construction of bows and arrows


  • Ya (equipment) – An asymmetric Japanese arrow
  • Yabusame (practice) – A type of mounted archery practiced in Japan
  • Yew (material) – A type of wood traditionally used to make bows[3]
  • Yumi (equipment) – An asymmetric Japanese bow; includes both long and short varieties (daikyu and hankyu)

See also


  1. ^ Schulyer, Keith C. (1970), Archery, From Golds to Big Game, A. S. Barnes and Co., Inc., ISBN 0-498-06961-3, p. 128
  2. ^ Schulyer, p. 494
  3. ^ Hansard, George Hagar (1841), "Of Yew Trees, Yew Bows, &c, &c", Section VIII, The Book of Archery, The Archery Library
This page was last edited on 21 November 2019, at 18:12
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